Football Game Notes vs. Alfred University - Oct. 6, 2018
The Matchup…Buffalo State is coming off a 41-7 homecoming victory over Hartwick last week to improve to 1-3 overall and 1-0 in Empire 8 play. Alfred picked up its second-straight win, defeating Morrisville State to move to 3-1 overall and 2-0 in league play. The Saxons hold a 12-7 lead in the all-time series, including wins in each of the past six seasons. Alfred prevailed 21-3 last season at home, pulling away with a pair of fourth-quarter touchdowns.
The Bengals' Last Game…Buffalo State forced five turnovers and held Hartwick to just 276 yards of total offense to celebrate homecoming with a convincing 41-7 victory in an Empire 8 season-opener at Coyer Field.
On offense, the Bengals piled up 447 total yards with a balanced attack. Martin Bailey paced Buffalo State on the ground with 117 yards on 21 carries and two touchdowns and added one catch for 21 yards. Senior quarterback Kevin Torrillo finished 19 of 28 for 296 yards with two touchdowns and one interception. Jordan Evert was the Bengals' leading receiver with eight catches for 114 yards with a touchdown.
Gino Bonagura paced the Bengals defense with 11 tackles, including two for loss with a sack. Darren Wesley produced two of Buffalo State's three interceptions, and Elloheim Tucker had the other while also adding a fumble recovery.
Hartwick evened the score at 7-7 early in the fourth quarter before Buffalo State pulled away scoring 34 unanswered points to close the game.
Primetime...This is Buffalo State's first-ever home football game under the lights at Coyer Field.
Oh captain, my captains...Buffalo State will rely on the leadership of four captains this season. On the offensive side, the Bengals will be led by junior lineman Dave Lauer and senior quarterback Kevin Torrillo, and the defense will be led by senior end Cliff Brown and junior linebacker Gino Bonagura.
With honors...Senior wide receiver Jamar Rutledge is the lone returning all-conference performer from a season ago. Rutledge was named first team All-Empire 8 as a return specialist. He led the league averaging 23.5 yards-per-kick return on 25 attempts, which included a 96-yard touchdown return at Morrisville State. He was also second in the league, averaging 10.3 yards-per-punt return.
The Signal caller...Senior Kevin Torrillo enters the season as the starting quarterback this season after sitting behind four-year starter Kyle Hoppy. Torrillo took his first varsity snaps when he started in place of an injured Hoppy vs. Cortland on Oct. 7, 2017. Torrillo finished 21 of 44 for 304 yards with two touchdowns and three interceptions in that game. He finished 2017 with four appearances and was 30 of 60 for 366 yards with two TDs and three interceptions.
Breaking Out...Junior receiver Jordan Evert entered the season with 16 catches for 213 yards. In his first game of the season at Bridgewater, he finished with five catches for 153 yards and a touchdown. He went over 100 yards again against Hartwick with eight catches for 114. Through four games, he has 25 catches for 411 yards and five touchdowns.
Long time in the making...Buffalo State running back Martin Bailey ran for 117 yards on 21 carries, including touchdown runs of 2 and 40 yards in a 41-7 victory over Hartwick on Buffalo State's homecoming. Bailey also caught one pass for 21 yards. It was Bailey's first start since high school way back in 2011.
Rookie Under Center...Freshman quarterback Tony Maple saw his first action in the loss at RPI, going 8 of 9 for 71 yards and a touchdown. He also had six rushes for 20 yards. He added a 22-yard touchdown scramble in the win over Hartwick.
On the Move...Buffalo State has officially announced it will leave the Empire 8 following the 2018 season to join the Liberty League in 2019. The move will stabilize both leagues, creating a pair of seven-team conferences that will collaborate for both non-conference scheduling and a postseason bowl game. Buffalo State will compete with Hobart, Ithaca, RPI, Rochester, St. Lawrence and Union in the Liberty League.
Return to the "Glory Days"...Buffalo State has posted a .500 record or better in each of the past seven seasons. The Bengals made seven NCAA playoff appearances and won three other ECAC Bowl Championships, all from 1991-2000. The Bengals advanced to the NCAA playoffs in 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1998 and 1999, and won ECAC Bowl games in 1991, 1997 and 2000. During that 10-year span, the Bengals went a combined 78-28 (.736).